Exploring Different Major Options: A Guide for Deciding Students

Oct 12, 2023

Choosing a major is a significant decision during your college journey. It’s a choice that can shape your academic path and future career opportunities. However, it’s essential to remember that it’s perfectly normal to be undecided about your major when you start college. In fact, Kasha Kilinegores, an academic and career advisor at William Peace University (WPU), emphasizes, “It’s completely normal to still be figuring out what you want to major in.”

While the word “crucial” is often associated with choosing a major, Kasha hesitates to use it because it can create undue pressure. Instead, she highlights the importance of taking the time to explore different options, interests, and career paths. Your college years are an ideal time to delve into your passions and discover where they might lead you.

Understanding the Importance of Choosing a Major

Selecting a major is more than just picking a field of study; it’s about identifying your interests and skills and aligning them with your future goals. As Kasha notes, “With majors and career paths, what we talk to students about is that there doesn’t always have to be a straight pathway from one to the other.” 

Your journey can take various routes, and it’s essential to develop transferable skills that can apply to different careers. That’s why WPU offers comprehensive professional development curriculum, known as PDS classes. These classes are designed to support you regardless of your major. Kasha highlights their significance, stating, “No matter what your major is, they help you articulate your skills and experiences and then use critical thinking to apply those to your future.”

Self-Reflection and Assessment

Self-reflection is a crucial part of the decision-making process. Kasha advises, “Reflect on what you’ve enjoyed learning about in the past.” Think about your favorite high school classes and why you enjoyed them. This can offer insights into potential majors that may be a good fit for you. 

Similarly, consider classes you didn’t enjoy as much and why, as this can help rule out some options. WPU offers tools to aid in this self-assessment journey like Focus2, which is a career platform where you can take various assessments that students get free access to. These assessments can provide valuable insights into potential majors and career paths.

In addition to self-reflection, Kasha highlights the value of trial and error especially with internships which offer a real-world glimpse into potential careers. Kasha notes, “A lot of people realize they don’t want to do something based on it.”  

It’s okay not to have all the answers immediately. College is a time to try different things and gain clarity about your interests, dislikes, and future possibilities. The upcoming annual engagement fair, Purpose@Peace, is an excellent event for exploring opportunities based on your interests, both on and off campus.

Moreover, the university emphasizes immersive learning, providing students with hands-on experiences in various subject areas. Kasha explains, “Immersive learning prepares students for a variety of different paths. Getting to actually do hands-on things in a particular subject area can help you narrow down if that’s something you’re interested in or want to learn more about.”

Exploring Academic Departments

WPU offers a diverse range of majors across various academic departments. From business degrees to fine arts degrees, from the sciences and humanities to technical majors like simulation and game design, there’s a wide array of options to choose from. 

Consider exploring the university’s interdisciplinary studies program, where you can customize a major to align with your specific interests. 

Learn more about WPU’s Undergraduate Degrees and Minors here.

Seek Guidance and Advice

When you’re unsure about your major, seeking guidance and advice is essential. Kasha emphasizes the uniqueness of WPU’s Academic and Career Advising department, “You don’t have to go to an academic advisor to talk about potential majors and then go to a career advisor to talk about potential careers—you can talk about it all in one place.

 Students don’t think in offices, students think in their experience. ‘It’s my college experience. It’s my major, my career, my future.’ And so to them, that’s one entity. So having these combined services, a one-stop shop type of thing can be really helpful.”

Additionally, the office is continuously improving its services to better assist students in choosing their majors. Kasha mentions, “The office of academic and career advising is currently working on new 4-year plans following the 4-credit curriculum roll-out.” These 4-year plans outline the courses needed for each major by semester, serving as a structured roadmap to help students make the major selection process more manageable.

Making the Decision

The decision-making process involves a combination of self-reflection and seeking out resources. Reflect on your interests, and gather information from academic and career advisors, faculty members, friends, and family. Your college experience is a holistic journey, and the choice of major is just one aspect of it.

As you progress through college, you’ll naturally narrow down your options. Undeclared Ian Williams, a first-year student, shares his thoughts on the process, noting that deciding on a major “can be intimidating because the whole world is in front of you going to college, and having a major declared can make you feel better.” 

Williams, however, will not allow the intimidation to rush his decision, saying, “My advisor has stressed that I will not suffer from being undecided as a first-year. I would much rather wait to choose a major and career path than choose something that I do not love doing for a living.” Williams is excited to explore who he is and find what he loves doing while at WPU.

Kasha advises, “When you feel ready, come talk to us and declare a major. You’re not locked in, and you can always change it.” WPU’s flexible curriculum allows you to explore different paths and make informed decisions. The path to discovering your major and future career is uniquely yours at WPU.

Connect with an Academic and Career advisor here.

Give Courageously to Peace

Thanks to the generosity of William Peace University supporters, current and future WPU students have access to the resources needed to learn through immersive experiences, build upon their courage and develop the confidence needed to turn passion into purpose.
Roses float in the campus fountain after an alumni event.
a student uses a laptop on a green bench at William Peace University

Give Now

Support future Pacer success. 

 

Become a Corporate Partner

Find out how your organization can collaborate with Peace.

Visitors

Whether you’re hoping to attend WPU or hosting an event, you’re welcome to visit WPU! 

Wedding at WPU
Phantom in downtown Raleigh

Conferences and Events

Host your conference, event, or wedding at WPU.

Location and Directions

Get directions, our address, a campus map, and hotel discount information.

Counselors

Learn about WPU and all it has to offer so you can guide your students to the best fit for their next step. 

Admissions Info

Meet and connect with our Admissions team.

Schedule a Visit

Learn about our processes and schedule a visit.

Alumni

Our success as an institution has always been rooted in the strength of our community. As an integral part of that community, we invite alumni to stay informed and connected. 

Alumni outside at WPU
Roses float in the campus fountain after an alumni event.
Building at WPU

Get Involved

Stay connected to Peace.

Donate

Contribute to the success of future Pacers.

General Info

Read about alumni benefits.

Parents

Families are an integral part of a student’s path to WPU. Find answers to your questions here. 

Commencement
Two WPU students work together on a project during class

Student Success: Why Choose WPU?

Learn about the value of an education at WPU.

Billing and Due Dates

Questions about your student’s enrollment or billing? Start here.

Current Students

Already a Pacer? Here’s your quick path to information, links, and other useful stuff.

Group of students talking
Students high-fiving each other

Current Students

Missing something? Can’t find a link? Start here.

Current Parents and Families

Is your student a Pacer? Here’s where to get information and contacts.

Future Students

Welcome to William Peace University! We offer programs for both traditional undergraduate students and online/hybrid classes through our School of Professional Studies. Find your path to WPU here.

Three WPU students walk through a brick archway on campus.
Three students discuss their work during class.
Older gentleman at a computer

First Time in College

Your WPU education will help you build practical skills for your future.

Transfer Students

Transfer up to 90 credit hours from any institution. 

Working Professionals

Enhance your existing career.

A WPU student works on a video game in the new esports and gaming lab on campus.
Woman in army green typing at computer
Two female international students

Readmission

If you previously attended WPU and are ready to return, start here. 

Veteran/Military

Learn more about how to apply the GI bill.

International Students

Find out how to attend WPU.

About

WPU has a long history as one of the city’s oldest universities. Find out more about our institution in the heart of downtown Raleigh. 

2023 Student Showcase
Staff Pumpkin Painting

History

Through 160 years, William Peace University has evolved to meet the changing needs of the students we serve.

Leadership

William Peace University is a small, private institution located in downtown Raleigh, NC.

Work at WPU

Join our team and see why William Peace University was voted one of the Triangle’s Best Places to Work!

DEI Staff
Design Rendering of WPU

Contact Us

Contact the University

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Learn about DEI at WPU.

Mission, Vision, and Values

Learn about WPU core tenets. 

Student Life

Whether you want to know more about on-campus events or see our residence halls, get a sense of what life is like as a student at WPU.

WPU Student on bouncy slide
A WPU student sits with his friends while eating at Belk dining hall.
WPU Safety Officer

Clubs, Activities and Events

Discover what’s fun at WPU.

Housing & Dining

When people say that WPU “feels like home,” we think that’s the ultimate compliment.

Safety & Security

The Office of Public Safety is committed to providing a community-friendly approach to enhancing campus safety for students, faculty and staff.

Dining room at Peace
A WPU student sits with his friends while eating at Belk dining hall.
Health and wellness at WPU

Athletics

Cheer on your Pacers at their next home game.

Student Support Services

Find out how the WPU team supports the whole you.

Health and Wellness

Learn about physical and mental health services available to students.

Academics

WPU offers a mix of more than 30 degree programs and additional minors. Our courses are four credit hours each, and every course features immersive learning experiences.

A student in WPU's online School of Professional Studies works on her homework.
2023 Internship Showcase

Immersive Learning

Find out about WPU’s unique approach to learning.

Center for Student Success

Peer tutoring, a first-year success program, and an internship program are just part of why Pacers succeed. 

Admissions

Start here to find out how to apply, visit, and learn more about WPU.

Before you apply:

Admissions team
students walking on campus
A student reviews scholarship and payment information in the financial aid office.

Connect with an Admission Couneslor

They’ll be your guide through the process.

Visit Campus

Get a feel for campus life.

Understand Costs

Find out about Financial aid and other options to pay for college.